I was only able to experience Amsterdam for a day but it felt like a week. The day was beautiful and after a delicious lunch by the canals I strolled through the streets documenting the beauty of the city. This photograph always reminds me of that lunch and the warmth on my face as I sat back and enjoyed the peacefulness of Amsterdam.
I´m not sure during what time of the year, but if you´re in Plaza Dam-- and if you´re in Amsterdam, you will surely be near this Plaza --there is an amusement park in the center that you should not miss! Waffles with sauces and spectacular creams, the famous Dutch fries, muffins, sweets, etc. Remember though to not eat too much if you're gonna ride one of the rides. They might cause vertigo, but the views are spectacular. Even if you don´t ride anything, you´ll have fun just hearing the people screaming.
You must visit this neighborhood if you visit Amsterdam. The area with the girls are narrow streets with some red lights on the doors, that are like cabins. WHen I went (last Christmas), they were cheeky, so I recommend that you have your bags and wallets safe to not be robbed. Some girls were very young but there were older ones and obese ones. Incredible. I recommend to visit the sex shop and the erotic museum where you can find interesting objects at a good price. It´s totally normal to pass by and look. The store of the preservatives (I don´t remember the name, it is very interesting, now I will put up photos. There were preservatives with the shape of the Tower of London, those you could use, and the price is expensive, but you can look at them to have a lugh. You cannot take photos or videos of the girls, it is prohibited. By the red district there are coffee shops and normal bars to have a coffee or a drink. I recommend that if you go in winter, cover up because it is very cold, so bring thick clothes, gloves, scarves and comfy shoes so water doesn´t come in.
I´ll add to Ana´s comment about my experience. I went with my friends to Amsterdam looking for ve knows what and suddenly we found ourselves in this park that we ran into by bike. It was last spring and we couldn´t resist the temptation to lay down on one of the green areas. Also, it was a coincidence that they were celebrating a concert with an incredible atmosphere, we almost couldn´t park the bike. Of course, it´s an obligated visit if you go to Amsterdam, I dare to say that ahead there are various monuments or museums.
The Rijksmuseum is a well known museum. My favourite painting, though not necessarily the most famous, is La lechera de Vermeer, depicting an eternally flowing milk jug and a Dutch windmill. I love the stillness of the mill much more than bourgeois style of Flemish painting. It is also known for the film and novel, The Girl with a Pearl Earring.
We took a trip from Brussels. The ticket was bought in the Midi station at the last minute and cost us (3 people) 152 euros there and return. I think it wasn´t too bad. The trip takes about 2-3 hours depending on the type of train. Once we arrived we went directly to the house of Anne Frank (8,50 Euros). We liked it a lot, but the sad thing is that the house is empty, meaning, there is no furniture although there is a machine and video that shoes it. After, we walked around the city, we saw the floating market, the Muntonner Tower, the Jordaan, the Waag, where Rembrant painted his famous work ¨The Lesson of the Anatomy of Professor Tulp¨, the canals and the red district. We were only there a few hours, but it seemed to be a disorderly city. The cyclists don´t have control. They come from all over and all directions. Chaos.
Van Gogh Museum was one of my top destinations while visiting Amsterdam. It is located on Museumplein which you can get to by tram 2, 3, 5 and 12. It is open daily from ten to six, except on Friday when it closes at ten o'clock. The tickets cost 10 euros (check out the queues waiting to buy tickets first because they´re usually long) .... The permanent collection can be found on the first floor presented in chronological order to show you how his works developed over time.
Marken, an island with a pretty nice town, a picturesque village with many similarities to Volendam and Edam. I remember getting off the boat and finding a souvenir shop where you could try on some huge clogs, which was funny. One of the curious things that I noticed in Marken is that people decorate their houses differently. I remember seeing decorations that I saw on no other house of other people, for example, two pots wearing pants and a tank top with jeans. Since there, there are also small channels it belongs to Holland. Another curious thing about this island is that it is long but narrow. There are 2 ways to get there, by boat or with a vehicle passing by the dam that connects it to the rest of Holland. A beautiful and wonderful place that you shouldn't miss.
The Museumplein (with Dutch origin meaning "Museum Square") is a square in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Three museums are located right there: the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum and the Stedelijk. Among other things, it is used for events and festivals. There you will find the famous letters ¨I AMsterdam¨
The Heineken Experience is a cathedral of beer. As the name indicates, it's a total experience. It's not just an old brewery, but a fully interactive journey through the world of beer. You learn how to make your own beer, how the iconic green Heineken bottle was designed, and the ingredients used to make this variety of liquid gold. It costs 17.00€ for the full two-hour experience with beers included. Totally recommended!
Keukenhof is referred to as the "Garden of Europe." It's a large, 32 acre park that's just outside of Amsterdam. Since there are plenty of bus trips that go to the park, you can rent a car or take the bus to get there. The journey there is almost as nice as the park itself, with its vast fields of striped colors with hundreds of tulips, hyacinths, etc. It's gorgeous. There are multicolored tulips planted there. The l drawback is that you can only admire it for eight weeks out of the year, when the bulbs bloom from March to April, consult the dates because it varies with the weather.
This is a perfect biking excursion from Amsterdam. From behind Central Station, you can take the ferry across Waterland. The bike route to the area's villages will be enjoyed from start to finish. There are channels, pastures, and cows viewed from an easy course because everything in Holland is flat. On the way to Edam, a beautiful town famous for its cheese, there are charming villages like Broeck in waterland, Monickendam, and Marken. Once there, there are friendly people, and it's well worth a visit if you spend a few days in Amsterdam.
Volendam was once the port of Edam. It is located along the Ijsselmeer River, which was abandoned after the construction of a new port near the hotel. These lands were then occupied by farmers and fishermen who eventually form the community of Volendam. Their wooden houses follow the tradition of the people from North Holland, and the later constructed streets have narrow channels along them. You can notice in the external decorations of houses some manicured Swedish family names. But Volendam is a tourist town with about 200,000 inhabitants. The pier with restaurants and bars suit all tastes. There are also many shops where you can find local crafts, lace and cheese which tastes a bit like Edam. Its port gives access by boat to the island of Marken which is 15 minutes away and is definately another gorgeous place to visit.
Kinderdijk is located very close to Rotterdam. A set of mills from the 18th century were declared as World Heritage Site by Unesco. There were many people walking and cycling. I think in July and August they put them to work on Saturday afternoon. They are in very good condition, at least from the outside.
Known as the last traditional mill in Amsterdam, this windmill has become a symbol of the country. About 25 minutes walk from the city centre, the mill contrasts with the area, very different from the contemporary buildings. Sadly, it is not among the city's most visited attractions. Its origins aren't clear - some time between the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. If you aren't going anywhere else in the Netherlands, just to Amsterdam, then it's highly recommended, to give you a taste of traditional Dutch life.